Dr. Savanna McKay grew up and graduated from high school in Swan River. She completed medical school at Northern Ontario School of Medicine in Thunder Bay, ON. and she completed her Family Medicine Residency through the University of Manitoba in the Parkland program.

“I chose to move back to Swan River to practice because of all the outdoor recreational activities available throughout all four seasons, including boating, camping, kayaking, hiking, snowmobiling, skiing and much more…”

Dr. McKay has been practicing since July 2017 in Swan River. Her clinic is located at the Swan Valley Primary Care Centre. When Dr. McKay is not in the clinic she is busy seeing inpatients and working shifts in the emergency department at the local hospital.

“One of the many benefits of working in Rural Manitoba is that the relatively new clinic and hospital are great facilities to work and the clinic has a very supportive group of colleagues to work with.”

During the interview, Dr. McKay indicated that rural life offered many benefits, such as; great outdoor recreation opportunities and quiet rural living very supportive communities (lots of fundraisers for medical equipment, etc.).

Dr. McKay stated that, she doesn’t have to wait to go on vacation to have fun, explore and enjoy outdoor recreational activities, instead she enjoys the fact that all these luxuries are available every day after work and weekend within close distance.

Family Medicine Physician

“Having grown in up rural Manitoba and being familiar with the friendly nature of small town living, it was an easy decision to pursue rural medicine. I have worked in Treherne for nearly three years and feel I was well prepared by Manitoba’s rural residency program for the work environment that exists in a smaller community. Our work entails a broad scope of practice, and we are challenged to problem-solve and enhance our knowledge on a daily basis.

My colleagues and I derive a lot of satisfaction from the opportunity to provide continuity of care to our patients. To develop a relationship and help them navigate the health-care system is truly gratifying.”

Family Medicine Physician

Dr. Fortier is the VP Medical Services/Vice-Président – Services Médicaux, Assistant Professor, for the University of Manitoba and works in Southern Health-Santé Sud.

He states that working and living in a rural community like Southern Health-Santé Sud allowed him to practice family medicine as it was always intended to be – the full spectrum from babies to seniors and everything in between.

Some of that involved offering primary care, emergency care and acute care services. Dr. Fortier indicates that,

“There is something really rewarding to fully understanding the patient in the context of their family within the context of their community.”

VP Medical Services / Vice-Président – Services Médicaux
Assistant Professor, the University of Manitoba

South Africa was home to Dr. Carine Minders where she also trained and practiced Family Medicine along-side her father Dr. Louis Minders.

Carine, with her parents decided to move to Canada just over a year ago and looks forward to her younger brother relocating to Canada in the near future.

“Canada is truly an amazing country with multiple different cultures and nationalities working towards a common goal”.

Dr. Minders says it was easy to embrace Canada as her new home because she found there were no cultural barriers and English was her first language.

She chose Manitoba because she knew another South African doctor working in Brandon and as a result, Dr. Minders currently works as a full time Hospitalist at Brandon Regional Health Centre, which also includes some shifts in the Emergency department.

“I knew very little about the different provinces in Canada, but after living here for just over a year now, I would choose Manitoba again! I cannot say enough good things about the hospital and I consider all the people there as my new and opted extended family. There is a special atmosphere of camaraderie when you walk through the doors in the morning and I am happy to be at work every day.”

Dr. Minders looks forward to starting a new Trans Health Clinic in Brandon this spring, stating that she was extremely proud to be part of such a wonderful health system. She indicated that she was able to practice first class evidence-based medicine to all people regardless of their financial background. Dr. Minders can focus on providing the best healthcare for each and every patient without first checking if their health care plan allows me to do so. I am proud that we can also practice a lot of preventative care and we have proper screening guidelines.

“I think family practice in Canada has allowed me to do what I truly believe in: Holistic patient care. Manitoba has a reputation for being the friendliest province, and I can testify to that as ”being fact.”

Family Medicine Physician

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